MALU SHARMA JAMMU: Constructed for the benefit of commuters travelling by public transport, a number of passenger sheds in the city are serving only beggars and hawkers these days, as they have set-up their businesses there. Nearly a dozen passenger sheds constructed by Jammu Municipal Corporation have either been encroached upon by beggars and hawkers or blocked by fruit-sellers, who have established kiosks right in front of the sheds. Most of the sheds have been rendered useless for commuters, who use public transport to reach their destinations. Passengers alleged that the sheds have been constructed at the spots, where they generally do not wait for vehicles. For instance, the passenger shed constructed at Shalamar road is located at a spot where no mini-bus halts, as the designated mini-bus stop is in front of SMGS gate. Many similar examples are there in the City of Temples and commuters believe that these sheds are just wastage of land and money. Similarly, passenger shed near Jammu University is also in a pathetic condition. STATE TIMES interacted with some commuters, who were taking shelter under this shed during rain. Bharat Bhushan, a commuter shared, “I took shelter under this shed during rain but you can see that there is leakage in the shed, rendering it useless. These sheds are of no use. These sheds neither provide shelter in this weather nor serve as a stop for vehicles. It is just wastage of tax payers’ money. Through your medium, I would like to request the concerned for maintaining these sheds properly so that these can fulfill the purpose for which they were constructed.” There is another shed constructed near Parade College gate. Apoorva Jamwal, a student, while interacting with STATE TIMES opined, “I do not think it is of any use, as no mini-bus stops here. This passenger shed is just wastage of land and money. One can easily find stray animals and beggars resting here. I am unable to understand that if authorities cannot maintain these sheds, then for what purpose they have constructed these structures?” “These sheds turned out to be sheer wastage of money, as they are not being utilised for the purpose they were constructed. The condition of the passenger shed constructed at backside of Ranbir Singh Library is very pathetic and is of no use for commuters,” said Shrwani Sharma, another college student. Ragini Sharma, a commuter waiting for mini bus at Amphalla shared, “It is really sad to see that the passenger shed constructed in the area is serving street-vendors and has become a hub of stray animals, especially stray dogs. Moreover, the inclined pillar here is posing threat to commuters. I think none in the administration is bothered about this passenger shed, located in such a busy area. I wonder for what purpose it has been constructed, just to utilise funds and nothing else.” Meenu Kamal, a working lady shared, “Passenger sheds are of no use in reality. In this rainy season, while waiting for my mini-bus, I really want to stop at a shed but all in vain, as neither these sheds are in good condition nor any mini-bus stops here. These sheds are just adding to the miseries of people and nothing else. I guess construction of these sheds is mere wastage of State exchequer and space.” Constructed at different places to streamline traffic system, these passenger sheds, across the city, just seem awaiting their proper utilisation by ‘real users’ i.e., passengers. But, it is unfortunate that most of the sheds have been occupied by vendors, hawkers, beggars and stray animals. The need of the hour is to utilise these passenger sheds properly, so that the purpose, for which these sheds have been constructed, is fulfilled. Moreover, proper maintenance and stringent laws should be implemented by concerned departments to streamline other things.
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